Bay Area/ San Francisco
Published on November 25, 2014
Noe Street's Little Free Library Set AflamePhoto: Jamison Wieser
It seems that Duboce Triangle's Little Free Library just can't seem to catch a break. Vandals struck once again on Sunday evening, this time setting fire to the magazine cabinet at the bottom of the free-standing miniature public library.
One of the little library's caretakers, Jamison Wieser, told Hoodline that the damage seems to stem from a stuffed animal that someone lit on fire and placed inside the library, as evidenced by synthetic stuffing and "black goo." Luckily, the furniture proved to be fairly flame-retardant and the damage was mostly cosmetic, said Wieser.

Back in May, Hoodline reported that just two months after its debut, the little library was stolen. After neighbors banded together to get a new little library, vandals once again came by and tried to forcibly smash the newly bolted down furniture.

Wieser said that every night he grabs a handful of books from the library and brings them inside because every couple of weeks all of the books will go missing. This allows him to restock the library so no readers go without. The caretakers have even tried to stamp the books letting people know that they come from a community library, but that hasn't worked to deter theft. According to Wieser, a fairly brash thief has even complained about the stamps via a letter left in the library asking that they stop stamping the books because the thief was trying to sell them.

Even after all of the Free Little Library's troubles, its caretakers are still committed to getting books into people's hands, and don't plan on abandoning the public library just yet. "I don’t think we ever discussed quitting," said Wieser.

"We have no idea why someone wants to target the library," Stephanie, another library caretaker, said yesterday. "The theft and stuff felt like ridiculous shenanigans, while the fire is malicious. We don't know if this is connected to the homicide in the neighborhood last night. On the one hand, I hope that there is only one and not two psychopaths running around."

If you want to help keep the project going and help pay for restoration of the library, you can make a donation to noesocute [at] gmail [dot] com.